Health & Fitness

Health & Fitness

To have an item listed free in The Potomac Almanac, send mail to 10220 River Road, Suite 303, Potomac, MD 20854, e-mail to, or fax to 703-917-0991. Deadline is Thursday at noon for the following week’s paper. Photos encouraged. Unless otherwise noted, all events are in Potomac. If you have any questions, call Rebecca Halik at 703-226-1653.

SPARK plans a monthly calendar of events with the help of its members such as potluck dinners, outings to museums, concerts, theater, educational presentations and discussions on parenting concerns, adult social activities and numerous activities that families can do together. Membership information is available at free monthly orientations. The next orientation is Sunday, July 2 at 3 p.m. at Bauer Drive Community Center, 14625 Bauer Drive, Rockville. 301-598-6395 or for more.

Stroke and traumatic brain injury survivors, as well as victims of degenerative neurological conditions, can now use new TWIST to speech therapy. Technology with Innovative Speech Therapy (TWIST) is among the first speech-language therapy programs to integrate computers and technology into an intensive rehabilitation program. TWIST features eighteen hours of intensive individualized speech therapy that specifically defines a patient's communication and cognitive strengths and weaknesses. It then matches those strengths and weaknesses with advanced computer software. TWIST gives people the opportunity to tackle their challenges head-on through technology.

Deaf Parent Network presents "Raising Teens Today" Thursday, July 26 from 7-9 p.m. at Jewish Social Service Agency, 118 Firstfield Road, Gaithersburg. Join other parents for a free workshop and learn the possible dangers of at-risk behavior and what resources are available. Response requested by Friday, July 14 by calling 301-990-7215; TTY 301-990-6880 or e-mail Accommodations for disabilities can be provided with two-weeks notice. Light refreshments will be served. Deaf social workers will be leading this group.

Chronic Pain Support Group is July 6 from 1:30-3 p.m. at Davis Library, 6400 Democracy Blvd., Bethesda. Support group sponsored by Pain Connection for anyone with chronic pain, their family and friends. Participants are welcome to bring pillows, mats, ice or hot packs to be comfortable. Call 301-309-2444 or visit

Support meetings and seminars take place at Suburban Hospital, 8600 Old Georgetown Road, in Bethesda. Call 301-896-3939 to register for all group meetings and for a complete listing of events.

* Gynecological Cancer. Group meets the first and third Mondays of the month from 4-5:30 p.m. in Conference Room 4. Group is designed for patients and survivors of cancer.

* Breast Cancer. Group meets the second Monday of the month from 7-8:30 p.m. in Conference Rooms 6 and 7. Group is designed for patients, survivors and family members. Guest speakers alternate with informal discussion.

* Caregivers. Group meets the first and third Wednesdays of the month from 1-2:30 p.m. in the Auxiliary House in Bethesda. Practical and emotional support for anyone serving as a caregiver.

* Multiple Sclerosis Caregivers. Group meets the first Thursday of the month from 6:30-9 p.m. in Conference Room 4.

* Eating Disorders. Group meets the second Wednesday of the month from 7-8 p.m. in Conference Room 4.

* Head Injury/Trauma. Group meets the first and third Thursdays of the month from 7-8 p.m. in Conference Rooms 1, 2 and 3. For individuals recovering from head injuries, and their families.

* Prostate Cancer. Group meets the third Monday of the month from 7-8:30 p.m. in Conference Rooms 6 and 7. Support for patients, family and friends. Guest speakers and informal discussion on alternate days.

Seminars, support groups and classes through Adventist Health Care take place at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, 9901 Medical Center Drive in Rockville, unless noted otherwise. To register and for a complete listing of available classes, call 1-800-542-5096.

* Alcoholics Anonymous/Al-Anon. These groups meet every Sunday at 7:30 p.m. Call 202-966-9115.

* Narcotics Anonymous. This group meets every Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Call 1-800-543-4670.

* Sickle Cell Anemia Support Group. For individuals with sickle cell anemia, their families and friends. Call 301-972-2442.

* Healthy Hearts. Cardiac support program is designed to provide inspiration, motivation and education to patients and caregivers following a heart attack or stroke. Group meets on Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. Call 301-253-1502.

* Hepatitis Support Group. A group for people suffering from chronic hepatitis. For information, call 301-216-1367.

* Heart-to-Heart, a support group for people with heart disease and their spouses, meets on the third Thursday of every month at 7:30 p.m., at the Adventist Cardiac Rehab Center, 9715 Medical Center Drive, Room 130, Rockville.

* Amputee Support Group, "Ability with Mobility," meets the last Thursday of every month from 6-8 p.m. Call 240-864-6200.

* Fatherhood 101 class meets on Saturday, July 15 at 1 p.m. $20. This workshop will help expectant fathers meet the challenges of fatherhood.

* Infant Massage begins on Tuesday, July 11 at 10 a.m. $60 and registration is required.

* Home Alone class meets on Saturday, July 15 at 10 a.m. $10/child and advance registration is required.

* Babysitting class meets on Saturday, July 15 at 10 a.m. $30 and registration is required.

* First Aid class is on Sunday, July 9 at 10 a.m. $45 and registration is required.

* Grief Care Support Group meets on Monday, July 10 at 7 p.m. To register 301-279-6112.

* Blood Pressure Testing will be on Wednesday, July 12 from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Free and registration not required.

* Laparoscopic Band Support Group will be held for those who are interested in learning about Laparoscopic Band Surgery and for those who have had this type of surgery on Thursday, July 6 at 6:30 p.m. 301-251-4128 or 240-453-5278.

* "Empty Arms, Aching Heart" will begin Thursday, July 6 at 7:30 p.m. This meeting is being held for those experiencing pregnancy loss, miscarriage, infant death, or stillbirth. Free.

* An Infant Safety and CPR Class will be held on Sunday, July 2nd at 2 p.m. This class will teach those who are interested how to childproof their homes and respond to situations involving infant airway obstruction and respiratory or cardiac arrest. Advanced regisration is required. Fee is $35 per person or $50 per couple.

* Pediatric Safety and CPR class will be on Thursday, July 6 at 7 p.m. Pre-registration is required. $35 per person or $50 per couple. Call 1-800-542-5096 for more information.

* Learning to Relax class on Wednesday, July 5 at 7 p.m. This class will center around practical relaxation techniques for stress reduction. Registration Required. $20.

* Discovering Motherhood on Friday, July 7 at 1 p.m. The goal of this program is to provide education and support for new mothers and their babies. Registration Required. $70.

* Sibling Tour on Wednesday, July 5 at 5:30 p.m. provides children of ages 5-9 the opportunity to discuss the birth of their new brother or sister, view a video and tour the nursery unit at Shady Grove Adventist Hospital. The goal of this program is to help children cope with the birth of their new sibling. Registration Required. $12.

* Brother and Sister class will be on Wednesday, July 5 at 4 p.m. for children 3-6 years of age who are expecting a new sibling. During this class the children will hear a story about a new baby in the family and tour the nursery. $12.

"Because I Love You" (B.I.L.Y.) is dedicated to supporting parents of adolescent and adult children with challenging, destructive or difficult behaviors. The group meets every Thursday, from 7:30-9:30 p.m., at the Bethesda United Methodist Church, Room 209, 8300 Old Georgetown Road, Bethesda. There is a $1 donation. Call Harriet at 301-530-3597.

The National Capital Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society needs volunteers for its Friendly Visitors Program. Visitors dedicate a minimum of one hour per month to visiting a nursing home resident with multiple sclerosis. Contact Alayne Bell at 202-296-9891 or via e-mail at Visit the Chapter's Web site at

Maryland Families for Stem Cell Research, a nonprofit education and advocacy group for stem cell research, invites citizens to share their stories of hope for a cure or treatment to debilitating diseases and injuries. By visiting, you can tell your story, send a photo and voice your support of public funding for stem cell research. Web site visitors can also donate on-line to support the education and advocacy programs of the organization. The site also serves as a source of information about stem cell advocacy efforts in Maryland for patients, families, researchers, doctors, scientists and public officials.

Bethesda Help, a 35-year-old, ecumenical, nonsectarian organization, seeks volunteers for one day’s service per month. Officers of the day work from home handling cases provided through an answering service, and drivers take qualified (elderly or disabled) persons to doctor’s appointments and deliver groceries to clients' homes. Training and backup are provided. Call 301-294-4888.

Volunteer Opportunities at the National Institutes of Health:

Donate Blood. The NIH Blood Bank is in urgent need of donors with Type O blood. Donations are given at the Clinical Center, Building 10, on the NIH main campus in Bethesda. Hours are Tuesday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Call 301-469-1048 for an appointment to donate.

Volunteer opportunities exist in the county addressing a wide range of health issues.

* Sexual Assault Victims. Montgomery County seeks residents interested in helping sexual assault victims and their families. Volunteers provide 24-hour crisis counseling and companion services at hospitals and police stations. Call 240-777-1355.

* Hospice Caring Inc. seeks volunteers to offer non-medical support to families facing terminal illness. The job involves providing companionship and respite care, assistance with household errands and tasks, and transportation. Call 240-777-2600.

* Montgomery County Hot Line. The Mental Health Association is recruiting volunteers for the Montgomery County Hot Line, a 24-hour telephone-support, suicide-prevention and crisis-intervention service. Volunteers are asked for a minimum of four hours a week for at least one year after training. Call 301-424-0656, ext. 117, to request an application.

* American Cancer Society. The Road to Recovery Program is recruiting and training drivers from Montgomery County. Donate a few weekday hours to transport patients to chemotherapy, radiation and other treatments. Must have own vehicle.

* Licensed estheticians and cosmetologists are needed to teach female cancer patients beauty techniques to restore patients' appearances and self-image. Call 301-933-9350.